Top junior players named in Northern Heat representative program


NORTH Coast’s best junior Australian Rules footballers have been selected into the 2021/22 Northern Heat representative program.

An initial 30 players from the North Coast and North West regions have been selected into the representative program, including the first ever group of Under 15s players.

As a result of COVID restrictions, not all players were able to put their names forward at the same time.

This means squad selections will be managed on a rolling basis, with the first 30 players having been selected and others to be added as the program gets underway.

The Northern Heat representative AFL program comprises the best Under 15s,16s, 17s, and 18s players from the North Coast and North West regions.

The Heat program exists to build the footy IQ of players, transition them towards the ranks of Senior footy, and to offer an alternate pathway.

The program includes video analysis, strength and conditioning training, and match play against the age group teams of the Southport Sharks club that competes in the VFL.

Based on the success of the Under 17 program since it was introduced three years ago, the decision was made to add an Under 15 squad this season.

This means double the opportunities for players from the North Coast and North West to develop themselves and take their game to the next level through their involvement in the summer program.

AFL North Coast Community Football Manager Paul Taylor said that the selected players will have to make a big commitment during the offseason.

“The Heat is an off-season program where we have to do plenty of travel just to get to training sessions where we know the conditions will be hot and draining,” he said.

“A lot of our program is delivered through personal programs where the players have to commit to doing the work outside of structured training sessions.

“Those that put in the work will see their skills and fitness go to another level that will stand them ahead of their opponents.

“Who knows how far their efforts will take them – they could be the next Northern NSW product in the AFL Draft just like Heat graduate Angus Anderson.”

The Northern Heat off-season program exists to extend the representative pathway for the players of the regions and provide them with a further avenue to build their game ahead of making the full-time transition into senior footy.
The program finishes with a match against the Southport Colts and from this, Heat players have been invited to trial with the Southport Sharks team that plays in the East Coast/VFL competition.

The following players have been named into this season’s Northern Heat representative program.

Northern Heat Under 15 program: Chad Anderson (Sawtell Toormina Saints), Cedar Barry (Port Macquarie Magpies), Jai Bowd (Bellingen Bulldogs), Patrick Carey (Bellingen Bulldogs), Ray Christie (Northern Beaches Blues), Max Cracknell (Nambucca Valley Lions), Serge Denblyden (Northern Beaches Blues), Will Devereaux (Nambucca Valley Lions), Beau Guthrie (Coffs Harbour Breakers), Diesel Harvey (Glen Innes Celts), Billy Hoppe (Gunnedah Bulldogs), Lochlan Jones (Port Macquarie Magpies), Mallee Martin (Inverell Saints), Angus McFarlane (Nambucca Valley Lions), Zane Quay (Northern Beaches Blues), Tom Ryan (Port Macquarie Magpies), Marlon Ryan-Frost (Northern Beaches Blues), Greg Sieber (Glen Innes Celts), Tane Skinner (Sawtell Toormina Saints)
Northern Heat Under 17 program: Hamish Anderson (Sawtell Toormina Saints), Jake Cosgrove (Tamworth Roosters), Jack Dadd (Tamworth Roosters), Dusty Hagon (Tamworth Roosters), Buckley Jarvis (Sawtell Toormina Saints), Will Kelly (Port Macquarie Magpies), Harrison Lee (Sawtell Toormina Saints), Jaxon Mawson Gulliford (Port Macquarie Magpies), Alby Popko (Grafton Tigers), Jaymus Troutman (Sawtell Toormina Saints), Kyan Upsall (Sawtell Toormina Saints).



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